The Most Powerful Space Telescope Will Aim Towards the Solar System’s “Graveyard”

The Most Powerful Space Telescope Will Aim Towards the Solar System’s “Graveyard”
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NASA managed to launch the James Webb Space Telescope last year in December after many delays. However, things look as it has been worth the long wait. Webb is now preparing to bring back unforgettable images about the Universe’s wonders.

The circumstellar disc known as the Kuiper belt has long been fascinating astronomers. We’re talking about the region of our Solar System beyond Neptune’s orbit, where many small cosmic objects exist, including three dwarf planets. As the Kuiper belt is located far away from the Sun (30 to 50 AU), the region is like a frozen hell where no life as we know it could be dwelling.

James Webb will be studying Pluto and other objects from the Kuiper Belt

According to Space.com, NASA’s James Webb, meaning the most powerful space telescope ever built, will have to study Pluto and thousands of other objects from the Kuiper Belt in 2022. The sensitive infrared cameras mounted on James Webb will be used to analyze the icy space objects better than before.

Although the Kuiper Belt might look like a frozen graveyard of the Solar System, it’s the place where a lot of diversity exists. The icy objects are indeed worth exploring, as they possess different characteristics. 

Heidi Hammel, an interdisciplinary scientist of Webb, stated:

Using Webb, we will be able to get information about surface chemistry that might be able to give us some clues into why there are these different populations in the Kuiper Belt.

Back in February, the James Webb Space Telescope released its first images of the Cosmos. The telescope is considered the successor of Hubble, the space telescope that has been sending images of the Universe for more than three decades. Hubble has been in low-Earth orbit since 1990.


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Cristian Antonescu

Even since he was a child, Cristian was staring curiously at the stars, wondering about the Universe and our place in it. Today he's seeing his dream come true by writing about the latest news in astronomy. Cristian is also glad to be covering health and other science topics, having significant experience in writing about such fields.

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